SO WHY AM I HAVING A FUNDRAISER TO RAISE MONEY & AWARENESS FOR
beyondblue: the national depression initiative?
From around the age of 13 I would sink into these incredibly soul crushing episodes of depression where I would pray to whoever was 'up there' to kill me. I could never bring myself to commit suicide so I would pray for an accident to happen to me. I would lie in bed & wish with all my might for a poisonous spider to bite me or for a drunk driver to run over me. It of course never happened.
Then all of a sudden I would become intensely happy and but my brain would get all fogged up and I would forget simple things like what shoes were for or what plates were and I would stay up all night walking from room to room.
I would have days where I literally believed that I was invisible & didn't exist and that I was a ghost.
I went through stages where I would force myself to eat rotting food. I would have massive binge eating sessions and HUGE drinking sessions.
When I was older I would go to doctors who (this was in the 1990s) would tell me that I was "just stressed". I would beg them to lock me up. I would tell them that I was terrified I was going to either hurt myself or other people. "Don't be silly" I was told. "Here. Have some valium".
(I never took any valium or any medications prescribed to me)
One day, years laterI had one of my brain fog days.
I woke up from my fog & I had been to Bunnings & bought what I needed to gas myself in the car.
I had even written down my "plan" for where & when.
I didn't even remember doing it.
Then I thought about my Mum and my family and my friends and how terrible it would be if I did this.
I realised that I seriously needed to get help.
I had heard about beyondblue.... I don't even know where. I rang them. I was very calm as I told them that I was this close to killing myself.
They were amazing.
They told me to stay on the line as they patched me through to a nearby doctor who was affiliated with them.
The Doctor told me to come into the clinic immediately.
I was diagnosed with Bipolar II. The Doctor told me to go straight to the chemist & get a script for Epilim filled & bring it straight back. I did. He instructed me to take one tablet immediately.
So I did.
About a month later I started weekly sessions with a psychiatrist who confirmed that I was indeed Bipolar.
Within a week of taking medication I remember saying to someone that colour & sound had come back to me. The fuzziness was gone.
It seriously was like something out of Pleasantville.
My life ONE THOUSAND PERCENT changed for the better from that day.
I can honestly say that if it weren't for beyondblue I don't think I would be here today.
A lot of people are very uncomfortable talking about suicide but I think that is part of the problem.
We need to talk about it because it is real.
Did you know that everyday at least six Australians die from suicide and a further thirty people will attempt to take their own lives?
I thank whoever is 'up there' that in the 2000s there is SO much more education & help available to people with mental illness.
If I can help raise more awareness for incredible organisations such as beyondblue then I am happy.
If you are having issues & believe you may have a mental illness or if you are thinking about suicide PLEASE contact either beyondblue 1300 22 4636 or Lifeline on 13 11 14.
There is help out there.
You are not alone.